Kick-Boxing Craze: A new form of aerobic exercise has participants kicking and punching instead of stepping and stretching and is sweeping the nation as well as the San Fernando Valley, where its founder runs a gym.
Boxing Guru: Billy Blanks, above, brought his trademark tae bo aerobics to Sherman Oaks in 1989, when he opened the Billy Blanks World Training Center. A seven-time world karate champion, Blanks, 42, developed the exercise for a more strenuous yet fun workout. Now his students include Paula Abdul, Sinbad and Shaquille O'Neal. "I was looking for a better way to become a better fighter," he said. Tae is Korean for "leg," and bo for "boxing."